‘We’re not taking this lying down’: Community condemns state’s proposal to transform Far Rockaway medical center to 15-bed ‘micro hospital’

Nearly a year after St. John’s Episcopal Hospital (SJEH) identified the first COVID-19 case in Queens and saw its emergency room flooded with sick people, the state now wants to impose drastic cuts to the hospital’s capacity and services that would endanger the Rockaway area.

Last week, the New York State Department of Health (NYSDOH) informed SJEH — the only hospital in the Rockaway peninsula, serving more than 13,000 residents per year — that it wants it to become a “micro hospital.” That would mean the hospital would need to reduce its capacity from 250 beds to just 15 beds; close specialty services like pediatrics and labor and delivery; and eliminate more than 1,000 jobs, according to information shared with QNS.

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